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Venezia

May 9, 2008 9:32 PM

This is my little ode to that most absurdly beautiful and unlikely of Italian cities. This tune, once again, features the mouth bow (otherwise known as the poor man's wah-wah) plus lots of percussion and whatnot. The mix could probably use a bit of tweaking here and there, but I think it's basically presentable...

VENEZIA

heard through ears still dreaming
seen through sleepwalk eyes
a luminescent ghost crawls across the bridge of sighs
the oily water shimmering betrays a frozen thought
and reveals that crucial moment that we missed
the silken lover spurned the broken stranger kissed

hear me mother hear me father
i'm going way down deep beneath the water

the grand canal is choked with drowning angels
the sun it spins a cold and icy blue
a silvery flock of pigeons in stop motion circles you
the oarsman guides his boat through winding waterways
past windows where ethereal shadows drift
a distant star collapses
and he feels the current shift

hear me mother hear me father...

the generations strung through centuries
just like rosary beads
their names are chiseled in the tarnished brass
the smell of wet decay
wafting through the midnight mass
like an aria trapped in a tiny radio
like jesus tacked up to that cross of gold
we suffer in translation our true stories falsely told

hear me mother hear me father...

and now you see my friend venezia is sinking
the perfect ending for the perfect dream
a city born again its promise now fulfilled
to the octopus, the sea horse and the bream
the right hand pens the verses
that the left hand soon erases
the rising waters reflect the shivering moonlight
that plays upon the carnival goers' faces

as they sing hear me mother hear me father
i'm going way down deep beneath the water

Copyright Samm Bennett / Directional Music (BMI)

posted by flapjax at midnite (13 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

1. Great lyrics.
2. Great melody.
3. Great rhythm. Love the treatment of the hand drums.
4. Great mix.
5. There is no five.
posted by Devils Rancher at 4:04 PM on May 10, 2008


Momma mia, che bello! What a great song, it actually feels like Venice. (To me anyway, especially when it's wet and gray there.)
posted by snsranch at 8:12 PM on May 10, 2008


I am so super jealous of your sense of rhythm. I really, really am.

I really like the way your songs are really built around interesting rhythms, and melody is almost secondary.

(Sometimes you remind me of a band called Saqqara Dogs, a guitar/stick/dumbek band from the '80s.)
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 1:00 AM on May 11, 2008


Thanks fellows, for your comments. THERE IS NO FIVE!

snsranch: Gratifying to hear you say that it feels like Venice. I was going for a quality in the percussion especially that would sound almost underwater...

and Karlos, indeed, rhythm and word (along with general sonic character and texture) are, I suppose, my primary concerns, with melody probably coming in around #3 or 4 on the priority list.

Also, Karlos, interesting that you should mention Saqqara Dogs. I never really listened to them too much, but I sort of knew the percussionist, Hearn Gadbois, years back when I lived in NYC. Our paths would cross every now and again. He's a fine percussionist, specializing in dumbeks and frame drums. Here's his MySpace page.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:21 PM on May 11, 2008


Sweet lyrics! And I like the picture links.
posted by Corduroy at 6:53 PM on May 11, 2008


Jealous: I could never play the Jew's harp, and I'm a Jew.
And this is very good! What is the instrument you're playing during the break at 3:00?
posted by not_on_display at 12:52 AM on May 13, 2008


Fuck me sideways Flapjax. This is top-notch.
posted by Jofus at 4:30 AM on May 13, 2008


I could never play the Jew's harp, and I'm a Jew.

Hah! That's why I usually call it a jaw harp! The instrument is neither a harp nor associated in any way with Jewish musical traditions! Which reminds me, didja ever see my FPP on the jaw harp? Well, here it is.


And the instrument that you ask about, n_o_d, is the faux hurdy-gurdy. That is, a sampled hurdy-gurdy, played on a keyboard. Which reminds me, you might be interested in my hurdy-gurdy FPP!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:55 AM on May 13, 2008


HURF DURF FAUX HURDY GURDY. Just wanted to type that. Also: boing! That is all. (Thanks again, flapjax. I look forward to the day when you will have created an FPP for every instrument on the planet, including the PVC-Wind category. (more) (and some PVC percussion for ya)
posted by not_on_display at 12:57 PM on May 13, 2008


Ha! You read my mind, of course, n_o_d: a PVC instruments post has been something I've thought about doing from time to time, and particularly the percussion stuff. The popularity of the Blue Man Group has resulted in a lot of tinkerers getting into PVC tube instruments.

And I see you linked to a Dennis Havlena page: he's built some great little instruments, like this one.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:21 PM on May 13, 2008


Oooh, yes, please do a PVC and/or a Dennis Havlena post... he does great things with propane accessories, too!
posted by not_on_display at 7:13 PM on May 13, 2008


Excellent stuff. More please!
posted by nthdegx at 2:34 AM on May 15, 2008


Fantastic, flap - it sets into a nice groove and cooks right along. Very evocative - calls to mind reflections and ripples. Thanks!
posted by Miko at 7:16 AM on May 20, 2008


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